Monday, August 17, 2009

I made it

Well it seems like ages since I blogged, and I'm glad to say it has been down to too much windsurfing :)
I made it to Fuerte via the Holy-land (Knock airport... don't ask) and Lanzarote (I said don't ask!)... and in the end it turned out that it was good I got there a week late. The previous week had no wind and a stinking heatwave, and on the first evening I arrived it was still 38 degrees.

Seems however I did bring the wind (as usual), which meant that next morning straight away it was onto the bumpy road to Punta Blanca. Good news for Gareth (IWA President), who had been there for a week with his lovely and heavily pregnant wife Louise. Their plan was to chill out for a week, and hopefully get some sailing in too... so Gareth (not Louise obviously) booked some looping lessons with my buddy Steve Gibson ( ), who is a damn fine windsurfer, coach, and... he will even cook your dinner in the evening at his restaraunt GIBSONS.

Gareth was pretty fired up as it was his last day, and he went for quite a few loops, but suffered the problem of feet coming out of the straps. It was a pretty intense session (as he had been looking forward to wind all week), and in the end I think despite his best efforts... he had to admit defeat for now, as he just ran out of time to refine his technique.
He pretty much had to jump in the car, pick up Louise and drive straight to the airport. You will get them next time Gareth!... see you in Rush for the next session!

For me and Steve though, that's pretty much how the next two weeks went. Wind every day, and on the beach at Punta from 10am till 8.30pm. On the days there was not much wind up North, we would hit the road to Sotavento, where you can guaranteed that it will be windy enough for some freestyle trickery. Some days on 5.4m, and most on 4.5m.
It was cool to see a few of the good guys still there from the PWA event, like EFPT leader Stephen van Broekhoven. He had all the tricks... spock-kono, burner-puneta, air funnell etc.. Inspiring stuff! Was also really cool to see so many young kids ripping around in Sotavento. By young.. I mean 6yr olds, blasting in 30 knots on 1.5m and 2.0m sails, on tiny boards like JP Young-Guns. I saw an Austrian kid of about 10, who was with his 'older' freestyle friends of around 17-18 who had all the moves. But the 10 year old was going for spocks and flakas. The future of windsurfing is pretty bright when kids are going straight into stuff like this.

Steve and I spent a lot of time filming with the GoPro Wide Helmet cam, and below is just a taster of the footage. We shot about 18 gigs in total from every angle... mast tip, boom mounts front and back, nose of board, helmet and in the water. I now have the task of sorting through the lot and seeing what I can come up with for a movie. Watch this space as I will post up a few frame grabs.

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